Autumn II: 19

Left.

薦枕高瀬の淀に立つ鴫の羽音もそそやあはれかくなり

komo makura
takase no yodo ni
tatsu shigi no
haoto mo soso ya
aware kaku nari
Pillowed on a mat of rush
Where the Yodo meets Takase
The starting snipe
With rustling wingbeats
Draw in my melancholy.

Kenshō.

397

Right (Win).

あはれさは萩吹く風の音のみか有明の月に鴫も鳴なり

awaresa wa
hagi fuku kaze no
oto nomi ka
ariake no tsuki ni
shigi mo nakunari
Melancholy is not
In the wind upon the bush clover’s
Sigh alone but
With the moon at break of dawn
The snipe a’crying.

The Provisional Master of the Empress Household Office.

398

The Right state that the Left’s poem is based on a misinterpretation of the song ‘The Spreading Moon Rises’, and this has led to the usage of ‘mat of rush’. Furthermore, in the absence of expressions such as ‘bush clover’ or ‘new grown rice’, ‘rustling’ lacks a context. The Left merely state that the initial section of the Right’s poem ‘does not sound attractive’.

Shunzei’s judgement: The gentlemen of the Right have already stated the issue with ‘rush mat’. As for ‘rustling’, I have already suggested that it was unsuitable in the earlier poem on bush clover in the topic of ‘Autumn Evenings’, and it is unfeasible to think that one could go so far as to use it in reference to ‘wing beats’. In regard to the Right’s poem, the initial line, indeed, sounds poor, and the central ‘alone but’ is also regrettable, but even so, it wins the round.

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